How To Secure The Right Russian Visa For You

Russian food in bowls

Are you thinking of visiting Russia for a holiday or a business trip?

If so, you are probably going to need to apply for a visa before you enter the country.

Known as quite a traditional and closed-door society, Russia has actually become a great country to visit with tourist cities, well-equipped for visitors with lots of things to do and see.

Russia is bursting with fascinating culture including its rich history.

Its well-known art and architecture can be seen in Russian Orthodox Churches.

You can visit museums such as the St. Petersburg Hermitage Museum or the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.

Other activities include taking a cruise down Russia’s canals or becoming a real Russian and taking a shot of vodka at a ryumochnaya (bar)!

When travelling, visitors must experience the taste of traditional Russian foods such as Pelmeni

This is a national dish of Russia consisting of pastry dumplings with minced meat or a nice bowl of borscht (beetroot soup)!

When visiting Russia either for business or as a tourist, make sure to dress appropriately.

Russia is infamous for its freezing weather during the winter months. However, their summers can be very hot and humid.

When planning trips to  Russia, most citizens from outside of the Soviet Union will have to apply for a visa to enter the country.

In this guide, you will learn about what visa would be best for you.

What type of visas are available to visitors?

When you are granted a Russian visa, it will be automatically tied to your passport.

This will enable you to enter and leave the country within the given time period allocated.

Before you plan on visiting Russia, you must decide on which visa type you will need. There are six main types of visas such as:

  • Tourist visa
  • Business visa
  • Personal visa
  • Student visa
  • Work visa
  • Transit visa

Russian buildings

What countries are exempt from a Russia Visa?

You will be exempt from applying for a Russian visa if you have a passport from one of the countries listed below:

  • Serbia
  • Israel
  • Turkey
  • Brazil
  • Argentina
  • Chile
  • Commonwealth of Independency States

What is a Russian Business Visa?

This visa allows you to stay in Russia for a maximum of 90 days in order for you to carry out business duties such as negotiations, attending events and conferences.

This visa can be valid for one or multiple entries.

How can I apply for a Russian Business Visa?

Before you apply for a business visa you must check if you are eligible.

This includes holding a valid passport, providing the required documents and you must make sure your stay does not overrun the time period stated on your invitation.

If you intend to apply for this business visa, you will have to provide a number of documents.

These documents include a valid passport within six months after your visa expiry date and it must contain at least two blank pages designated for visas.

You will need a standard passport size photo in colour with a white background. Your application form must be fully completed.

It takes 5 to 10 working days from the day your visa is applied for to process your Russian visa.

Note: Non-Irish passport holders must have a letter of invitation from your sponsor company or a recent bank statement.

an image of Russian dolls

What is a letter of invitation for a Russia Business Visa?

To apply for a business visa, you will need to have a Russian Business Invitation letter which is approved by the Ministry of Internal affairs in Russia.

Luckily, you can easily get your invitation with Visa First!

Can I work in Russia on a Business Visa?


A business visa only allows holders to take part in tasks that are not to be considered gainful employment or work such as business events, attending meetings and seeking business opportunities.

If you want to work in Russia, you will need a work permit.

Need A Business Visa To Russia?
Submit your Russian Business Visa application and our visa specialists will take care of the rest!

What is a Russian Special Tourist Visa?

This visa is suitable for visitors planning a holiday to Russia as it allows you to stay and travel in the country for a maximum of 30 days.

Once you apply, you will be issued with your travel visa with the number of days you have requested and will be stated on your Tourist Voucher.

How can I apply for a Russian Special Visa?

To apply, you must be eligible. This includes having a valid passport, providing the required documents and not exceeding the time period stated on your invitation.

You must also have a Russian Tourist Voucher that is organized by a Russian Travel agency.

Make sure the agency is a licensed one. The good news is, you can easily secure your tourist voucher with Visa First!

Note: For Non-Irish passport holders: A letter from your employer confirming your employment and upcoming trip or a recent utility bill or a bank statement will be necessary.

It takes 5 to 10 working days from the day your visa is applied for to process your Russian Special Tourist visa.

What is a Russian Tourist Visa?

Similar to the Special Tourist Visa, you can travel and stay in the country on holiday for up to a maximum of 30 days.

You will be given a travel visa with the number of requested days stated in your Tourist Voucher.

How to apply for a Russian Tourist Visa?

To apply for a Russian Tourist Visa, it is the same process as applying for a Special visa.

You will need the same edibility and requirements as listed above.

What is a Russian eVisa?

This is an electronic visa that allows people to travel to a specific region in Russia for a short stay.

In order to apply, you must first check whether or not you are eligible.

You can get an electronic visa to travel to Kaliningrad Oblast, St. Petersburg and Leningrad, and the Russian Far East Federal District.

overview of a city in Russia at night

Can I apply for a Russian eVisa online?

Yes. The easiest way to secure your Russian eVisa is to apply online with Visa First.

Why Choose Visa First When Applying For A Russian Visa?

Here at Visa First, we have over 15 years of experience dealing with visa applications.

We strive to provide easy and convenient visa processing and immigration services avoiding long queues at the local embassy or consulate.

Visa First offers some additional services to make planning your Russian trip easier such as:

  • Secure a Russian visa without facing embassy queues and hours spent filling out forms
  • Get your Russian Invitation Letter – this is a requirement
  • To successfully obtain a Russian visa you must have adequate travel insurance – we offer Worldwide Travel Insurance
  • We will make sure that your passport is delivered to you by the most convenient means possible

Our team will guide you through the tricky application process – ensuring your forms and documents are completed correctly. We can also boost your chances of a successful outcome.

Visa First has been a licensed Visa expert since 2003 and has over 1 million clients worldwide.

Also, we have gained a 99.7% approval success rate.

If you are interested in visiting Russia, Visa First can help you with your Russian visa applications!


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